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The mega healthcare plan (informally known as 'ModiCare', 'NaMoCare') announced in the Union Budget 2018-19 has been given an overwhelming thumbs-down in two public polls conducted by Business Standard.com. 68% voters on Facebook and 57% on Twitter are of the opinion that the scheme is unlikely to succeed. The healthcare plan aims to provide 100 million poor families with insurance cover against hospitalisation will cost up to Rs 12,000 crore annually.
Most voters are asking a crucial question - Where will the money to fund this scheme come from? One of the voters highlighted the fact that the scheme has not addressed the problem of insufficient infrastructure. "The rural and small-town India's hospitals are poorly equipped and incapable of serving the poor and lack doctors and nurses," said a Twitter user.
'Modicare' is specifically targeted at India's poor
The total cost under 'Modicare' to cover 100 million households has been estimated at Rs 40 billion. Centre has confirmed allocation of Rs 20 billion for the scheme. According to people familiar with the matter, Centre will look at states to pitch in with the remaining Rs 20 billion. The expenditure on the scheme, however, could see a significant rise if the government turns the program into a universal healthcare scheme with benefits for all citizens in the country.
Under the Modi care, the government will invite bids from insurance companies to cover these 10 crore families. These insurance companies will tie up with healthcare chains where the insured will be treated. It's highly unlikely the poor will have to pay premiums since it's a promise to provide a cover of up to Rs 5 lakh per family for secondary and tertiary care hospitalisation
The healthcare plan is likely to be launched on August 15 or October 2, according to officials.